The latest Speak Up survey findings from Project Tomorrow reveal how far schools have come in making digital learning available to every student — and how far they still have to go to realize the full value of their edtech investment.

Although the survey indicates that students in a majority of schools are now given a mobile device to use in class, there are mixed signals about the value this adds to their learning. For instance, when asked to identify the benefits of digital learning for students, 86 percent of teachers and 93 percent of principals cited greater engagement as the most significant outcome, instead of stronger indicators of success such as deeper learning or more sophisticated student work.

Julie Evans, CEO of Project Tomorrow, believes schools aren’t seeing enough value from digital learning because there are too few transformational uses of technology happening in schools today.

“Too often, classroom technology implementations aim to mirror or replicate traditional learning modalities, such as using a mobile device to take notes or take a class poll,” Evans writes in a briefing paper about the survey results. “It’s difficult to demonstrate value or justify a return on investment with these substitution-type activities.”

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About the Author:

The former editor of eSchool News and eCampus News, Dennis Pierce is now a freelance writer who has been covering education and technology for more than 20 years.


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